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John Sterling’s call of Josh Donaldson’s Yankees walk-off is exquisite

This is why John Sterling belongs in Cooperstown.

The Yankees‘ play-by-player’s call of Josh Donaldson’s dramatic walk-off grand slam on Wednesday night was perfection. Much to the chagrin of Twitter trolls and grumpy columnists. May he grace the broadcast booth as long as he is able and willing.

Donaldson’s lifted the desperate Yankees to an 8-7 triumph over the Rays in the Bronx.

Donaldson’s blast came after Aroldis Chapman gave up three runs with two outs in the top half of the frame to give Tampa Bay a 7-4 lead. Yankees first baseman Anthony Rizzo forced extra innings with a solo shot in the eighth inning. The Yankees snapped a three-game losing skid with the win. They had dropped six of their last seven and 12 of their last 15 entering the night.

The Yankees (73-45) have a 10-game lead on the Rays for first place in the AL East. The lead is nine games in the loss column. They have a 10-game lead (11 in the loss column) on the AL Central-leading Guardians for a top-2 seed in the postseason.

And again: Sterling is a local treasure. Yes, he misses some calls. It’s baseball on the radio. Not war reporting. He is one of the last few remaining special qualities that reminds you the the Yankees are the Yankees, and not just another team.

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James Kratch can be reached at james.kratch@xlmedia.com

James Kratch is the managing editor of ESNY. He previously worked as a Rutgers and Giants (and Mike Francesa) beat reporter for NJ Advance Media.